Two security analysts from the disbanded congressional Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) commission have testified at a US House subcommittee last week that North Korea could shut down the US power grid and kill 90% of Americans within a year.
They continued by stating that Washington was ignoring the threat and stressed there was an urgent need to harden the US utility infrastructure against such EMP attacks.
Current US antimissile defenses were also termed “not up to the job” in intercepting rockets fired at the US from the South Polar region or near Antarctica.
William R. Graham, the chair of a former US commission that assessed the EMP threat to the US and its former chief of staff, Peter Vincent Pry, cited previous research by Ambassador Henry Cooper, former Director of the US Strategic Defense Initiative on the subject.
If Kim Jong-Un were to launch such an EMP attack, Mr Cooper was quoted as saying:
“The result could be to shut down the US electric power grid for an indefinite period, leading to the death within a year of up to 90 percent of all Americans — as the EMP Commission testified over eight years ago.”
On top of urging Washington to prepare for a possible EMP attack, the researchers also warned that North Korea’s nuclear arsenal is becoming more of an issue.
The experts wrote: ‘The EMP Commission finds that even primitive, low-yield nuclear weapons are such a significant EMP threat that rogue states, like North Korea, or terrorists may well prefer using a nuclear weapon for EMP attack, instead of destroying a city.’
Both Pry and Graham worked with the disbanded Commission to Assess the threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) Attack.
The commission was created by Congress in 2001 to advise Congress, the President, Department of Defense and other agencies on the nuclear EMP threat to US military systems and civilian critical infrastructures.